Tue 03 Oct 2023

Why it’s back to where it began time for ERC’s McErlean

Josh McErlean will return to the scene of his FIA European Rally Championship debut when he contests Rally Hungary this week.

Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy-supported McErlean was an ERC rookie when he placed 11th overall on Rally Hungary in 2020.

A Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing Junior Driver programme member, McErlean makes his Hungarian comeback in a PCRS-run Hyundai i20 N Rally2 alongside co-driver James Fulton. He’s aiming to “mix it towards the front”.

The 24-year-old who was last in action on the ERC-counting Barum Czech Rally Zlín in August, said: “It feels like a very long time since we were last out so I’m thrilled to head back to the ERC, especially as it’s where I made my debut in the championship.

“It's one of those really challenging rallies where the roads and their characteristics are very changeable, much like the weather, so it’s important to be as consistent as possible throughout the weekend. But it’s a great rally and will serve as the perfect test bed for our last WRC outing of the season at the new Central European Rally later in the month.”

McErlean continued: “We have a great opportunity ahead of us to finish the year on a high. Our asphalt pace has been building this season, but I know there is work to be done so [we] have been working really hard in the downtime with the Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy to address that. Their assistance has helped transform our gravel pace, and I believe we have the right tools in place to do the same on the Tarmac.

“I’m very eager to get back to the ERC. It has great media exposure as well as top competition, so the aim is to mix it towards the front.”

Based in the city Nyíregyháza, the fourth Rally Hungary marks the deciding round of the 2023 ERC season from 6 - 8 October.

Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM